Does Vermouth Go Bad?

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Vermouth, an enhanced wine that originates from Italy, is a popular ingredient for many cocktail and culinary recipes.

It’s often mixed with other spirits like gin or whiskey to create cocktails.

Does vermouth go bad?

The short answer is yes, vermouth does go bad.

Vermouth doesn’t just taste bad after a few months, but also becomes unsafe to drink due to bacteria growth.

In fact, vermouth will start to ferment after about two years, which means it needs to be discarded before then.


How long does vermouth last?

It varies depending on what type of vermouth you purchase.

Some types of vermouth tend to stay fresh longer than others.

For example, dry vermouth tends to last longer than sweet vermouth.

What are the signs that vermouth has gone bad?

In general, the more alcohol present in a product, the quicker it will go bad.

That’s why most people don’t drink vodka straight out of the bottle, as it only contains between 15% and 20% ABV (80-95 proof).

But when it comes to vermouth, the alcohol content is much higher.

The average vermouth recipe calls for 40% ABV.

This is why vermouth needs to be consumed within two years, otherwise it will start to ferment.

Does Vermouth Go Bad? 1

Can vermouth be frozen?

Yes, vermouth can be frozen.

But keep in mind that freezing it will increase the likelihood of mold growing.

How should vermouth be stored?

Ideally, vermouth should be kept somewhere cool and dark where it won’t get exposed to sunlight.

If possible, store it in its original container so you know exactly how much vermouth you have left.

Keep in mind that vermouth does not tolerate temperature fluctuations well.

When the ambient temperature changes, so does the vermouth.

Keeping the vermouth at room temperature may cause condensation to form on top of it.

This is because the temperature of the air inside the bottle is lower than outside the bottle.

This condensation causes mold to grow on top of the vermouth, which could make it smell bad and potentially ruin the entire batch of vermouth.

To prevent this from happening, keep the vermouth in a refrigerator or cooler until you finish drinking it.

What is vermouth made of?

Most vermouths are made of wine and distilled spirits such as brandy.

There are also some vermouth recipes that call for ingredients like herbs, fruits, spices, and sugar.

But most recipes will call for red wine, white wine, or both.

When making vermouth, the wine or spirit is first “fortified” by adding sugar and water.

Then the mixture is filtered and fermented using yeast.

After fermentation is complete, the vermouth is bottled and aged for anywhere from three months to two years before being released into the market.

What is the history of vermouth?

Vermouth started off as a medicine in the Middle Ages.

It was used as a tonic to help cure ailments such as fever and hangovers.

During the Renaissance period, vermouth became popular as a digestif for meals.

People would drink vermouth to help them recover from heavy meals.

Over the next few centuries, vermouth continued to develop and evolve.

During World War II, vermouth became a popular drink among Allied soldiers who had access to the beverage due to its high alcohol content.

Soldiers drank vermouth to help them stay alert during combat.

How is vermouth used?

Vermouth is a versatile ingredient that can be used throughout cooking and baking.

You can add vermouth to martinis, Bloody Marys, mojitos, sangrias, and even desserts like puddings and cakes.

Some chefs recommend adding vermouth to sauces to give them extra flavor.

You can also add vermouth to salad dressings and marinades to enhance their flavors.

There are several different types of vermouth available on the market today.

Each one has its own unique characteristics and uses.

Here are some of the most popular vermouth brands.

  • Angostura bitters
  • Bénédictine
  • Dolin Rouge
  • Goya
  • Martini Rossi
  • Mumm Cordon Bleu
  • Ridley Parker

What are some recipes that use vermouth?

Here are some common recipes that call for vermouth.

Make sure to check each recipe for specific instructions regarding the amount of vermouth needed.

  • Brandy Alexander
  • Chocolate Mint Martini
  • Cream Soda
  • French 75
  • Honeydew Sangria
  • Margarita
  • Mimosa
  • Pear Bellini
  • Pink Lady Cocktail
  • Sangria
  • Tequila Sunrise
  • Tom Collins
  • Vodka Gimlet

Here are some of the most popular cocktails that call for vermouth.


Amaretto Sour

Bloody Mary



Champagne Cocktail


Devil’s Food Cake

Grapefruit Mimosa


Jamaican Rum Punch

Kir Royale

Mai Tai


Pegu Club

Piña Colada

Rob Roy

Rum Runner



Surfer Rosa


White Russian

Yellow Bird


For more information about vermouth and other related topics, check out these links:

  • How to Drink Wine Like a Pro
  • How to Drink Champagne Like a Pro
  • How to Drink Whiskey Like a Pro
  • How to Drink Vodka Like a Pro
  • How to Drink Gin Like a Pro

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